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Small plane experiences hard landing, flips on runway in Lakeland a day before Sun 'n Fun starts

Sun 'n Fun Int'l Fly-In & Expo runs 4/10-4/15
Posted: 11:11 AM, Apr 10, 2018
Updated: 2018-04-10 15:11:28Z
Small plane flips on runway after hard landing
Small plane flips on runway after hard landing

The Lakeland Police Department responded to an aircraft incident at Sun 'n Fun Int'l Fly-In & Expo a day before the opening of the big air show. 

Officials say a 2016 experimental amateur built aircraft experienced difficulty while trying to land at the Sun 'n Fun Air Show at approximately 6:24 p.m. on Monday. 

Sun 'n Fun Int'l Fly-In & Expo takes to the skies over Lakeland this week

The experimental airplane had a hard landing, causing the front wheel to collapse and the plane to flip forward on runway 8-26. The pilot was Steven Gerard Felix, a 54-year-old student pilot from Alexandria, Virginia. He was not injured. 

The runway was closed for approximately 30 minutes while emergency personnel responded to the scene. 

The plane was moved to a secured location and FAA personnel responded to the scene for a preliminary investigation.